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Coding for GOOD: Photos from the Hack-a-Thon

The three Coding for GOOD finalists: Brian Bonus, Ada Ng, Corey Speisman

This content was produced by GOOD with the support of Apollo Group

Last October, GOOD and Apollo Group announced the launch of Coding for GOOD, an opportunity to gain skills in coding and, for one lucky participant, a chance to work with us here at GOOD. The program is our effort to bridge the skills gap through real-world application.

Participants had eight weeks to take sixteen free coding lessons and submit a final project using the skills they learned by December 30, 2012. We announced our top three finalists on January 11, and this past weekend they flew to Los Angeles to compete in a two-day hack-a-thon at the Google offices. Our three contestants, Brian Bonus from Los Angeles; Ada Ng from Brooklynm NY; and Corey Speisman from Arlington, Virgina, were each paired with a member of the GOOD tech team to face off against other area developers. Speisman and Bonus, and their teammates took home prizes from Google for their hack-a-thon projects.

Take a look at images from their weekend, and be sure to check back on Wednesday when we announce the Coding for GOOD winner.

Ng and her teammates work on concepting their hack-a-thon project, a website that pitches two YouTube videos from the same category against each other and asks you to decide which you like best. Ng says, "I love collaborative environments…I found a giant whiteboard for us to all sketch together and figure it out."

Speisman (L) and GOOD software engineer, Ryan MacInnes (R), hard at work on their project, which was a web app where a user puts in their location and it returns YouTube videos of concerts in your area. It won them the Best Executed Web App award. "I went into the hack-a-thon with very little expectations. I had no idea what to expect and didn't realize how comfortable I would feel in a big group of professional coders and walked away with a ton of knowledge," says Speisman.

Bonus discusses plans with his teammates. Their project was an ed tech tool that would allow teachers to easily pull videos from YouTube to integrate into lessons, and allow students to interact with the material on the mobile devices. His team of five won the award for Best Teamwork.

Ng and GOOD software engineer, Dwayne Anderson, take a break.

Bonus and his teammates, including GOOD software engineer, Ben Callaway (L), work on their project. Says Bonus, "I was able to keep up to a certain extent with what [Ben was] doing, so that was kind of encouraging to know that I may not know [everything] but I’m still able to contribute in other ways to solve problems."

Speisman outside the hack-a-thon.

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